Doris Duke Theatre Surf Film FestivalOpening night of the 2nd Annual Surf Film Festival sold out on Friday, and pro surfers Kekoa Cazimero, Jason Shibata, Jun Jo and Kaupena Miranda were among the crowd. There was a buzz in the air as 280 people packed into the Doris Duke Theatre, and 60 more were turned away at the front door. The few Academy staff members who had seats gave them up so more surf fans could attend. Thanks to media sponsor Contrast Magazine, Chinatown Boardroom, and the Academy’s Theatre and Communications departments, I’d say the word was out that the Surf Film Festival was the place to be that evening.

Guests who arrived at 6pm enjoyed free beer from Blue Moon and Coors Lite (they didn’t last long!). Da Spot sold out their affordable global cuisine served plate-lunch style. A big mahalo to everyone who turned out for the festivities.

The festival kicked off with the Hawaii premiere of Mills native Lance Arinaga’s “ICONS2,” which features the islands’ top watermen. “I made ‘ICONS’ because unless you’re Andy or Bruce Irons, you’re not going to make it into a video. I wanted to highlight the Hawaii talent,” Arinaga told the audience in his pre-screening talk. With quick edits, a booming soundtrack and engaging surf footage, “ICONS2″ was a crowd pleaser.

The festival continues through July 24, with Hawaii premieres of “The Present,” “Musica Surfica,” and “Dear & Yonder: Daring Stories of Ladies United By the Sea,” as well as two surf film favorites “Sipping Jetstreams” and “The Green Iguana.” (Special guest Jack McCoy will be at the festival July 19 to introduce his film “The Green Iguana” during the 7:30p.m. screening.)

And don’t forget the Tokoro board! See a film and you’re automatically entered in a raffle for a board that master shaper Wade Tokoro created for Mick Fanning. Buy a membership (or upgrade if you’re already a member) and you get extra raffle tickets to add to the pot. See details on the film page. The winner will be announced closing night, July 24, before the screening of “Dear & Yonder: Daring Stories of Ladies United By the Sea,” free beer from Primo and food from Da Spot ($7 and $10 for heaping plates) will be served that night. See you there! (We recommend you buy tickets online in advance.)